WS1 — Lifetime gifts, inter-generational relationships and inequality


It is sometimes suggested that ‘baby boomers’ – people born between 1945 and 1965 – have  had access to more wealth and welfare provision than any other generation.  If this is the case, it raises questions about the responsibilities of individuals in passing on some of this wealth to the next generation. This stream explores the current financial and material support that is provided within families to see the extent to which different generations are giving and/or receiving support. While the research is primarily focusing on inter-generational inequality and transfers, it is vitally important to consider how this varies according to economic inequality within generations.

A mixed methods approach is applied within the stream. Secondary analysis of the Attitudes to Inheritance survey and other datasets will be conducted. New empirical data will come from qualitative and quantitative research.  We will interview children, parents and grandparents in 20 families in order to track intra-family transfers across generations. We will then carry out  a representative sample survey to test any hypotheses generated through the qualitative stage.

We will:

  • Measure financial transfers across generations in both directions (‘down’ and ‘up’ )
  • Explore why, and how, people finance such transfers
  • Assess the impact of inter-generational transfers on both the donors and the recipients
  • Explore attitudes towards supporting or being supported by family members
  • Analyse variations in the above by demographic factors such as ethnicity, gender and social class



Ricky Joseph: Mind the (housing) gap: patterns of family wealth past, present, future

time: 17th March, 12.30-1.15 pm

venue: CHASM, Room 111, Business School, University of Birmingham


WS Members:

Prof Karen Rowlingson (CI)
Dr Ricky Joseph (Research Fellow)


WS Institutions:

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